Posts Tagged ‘Nelson Mandela’

BK/NY – Wednesday, April 9th – FOIA Street Fighter Ryan Shapiro at The Base

WHAT: Ryan Shapiro on Fighting to Expose the U.S. Government’s War on Mandela, Occupy, Animal Rights, & More
WHEN: 8:00pm, Wednesday, April 9th
WHERE: The Base1302 Myrtle Avenue Brooklyn, New York 11221 (Directions below)
COST: Free, but donations are appreciated.
ryan_event_blogCome join NYC ABC and The Base for a discussion with “FOIA Street Fighter” Ryan Shapiro.

Will Potter has called Ryan ShapiroThe FBI’s Worst Nightmare,” and a recent article about Shapiro’s work opened by declaring, “Depending on whom you ask, Ryan Shapiro is either the country’s ‘FOIA superhero’ or a ‘threat to national security.’” Shapiro is a longtime radical social justice activist and now also a PhD candidate in MIT’s Department of Science, Technology, & Society (HASTS). Shapiro’s research focuses on the political functioning of national security and the policing of dissent. To this end, he currently has over 700 Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests in motion with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), and National Security Agency (NSA), as well as numerous ongoing lawsuits against these agencies for failure to comply with his FOIA requests. The FBI is even now arguing that Shapiro’s dissertation research on FBI campaigns against animal rights and environmental protesters is itself a threat to national security.

A recent revelation resulting from Shapiro’s research is the FBI monitoring of Occupy Houston. As important as the monitoring itself, is the fact that the FBI uncovered a plot to assassinate Occupy “leaders,” yet did not share this information with potentially endangered activists.

Additionally, through his FOIA research and lawsuits against the FBI, Shapiro has exposed FBI attempts to bring Animal Enterprise Terrorism charges against animal rights activists conducting undercover investigations of factory farms. Notably, Shapiro is also one of the plaintiffs in the federal lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act.

And just last week, Shapiro and his attorney filed a law suit against the NSA, FBI, CIA, and DIA for their failure to comply with Freedom of Information Act requests filed shortly after the death of Nelson Mandela. In this particular series of FOIA requests, Shapiro is trying to determine the role the United States played in Mandela’s 1962 arrest, and to answer why the U.S. government kept Mandela on a terrorist watch list until 2008 and what qualified him as a terrorist in the first place.

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NYC – Tuesday, July 23rd – Letter-Writing to United Freedom Front Prisoners

WHAT: Political Prisoner Letter-Writing Dinner
WHEN: 7pm sharp, Tuesday, July 23rd, 2013
WHERE: CAGE83A Hester Street (UPSTAIRS) New York, New York 10002 (directions below)
COST: Free
tom and jaan_mandelaWhen Barack Obama recently went to visit the cell where Nelson Mandela spent 18 years as a political prisoner, the irony wasn’t lost on NYC ABC. And while we planned to focus our next political prisoner letter-writing dinner on two U.S. held prisoners who, like Mandela, fought to upend the apartheid regime in South Africa, other folks were offering a similar analysis. So this week, as we gear up to send letters to United Freedom Front prisoners Jaan Laaman and Tom Manning, we share the following from World’s Deadliest Herbivore. If you aren’t following that tumblr, you should be.

“While Barack Obama uses a visit to Nelson Mandela to avoid criticism for his human rights abuses at home and abroad, he is also ignoring two other men who fought against Apartheid in South Africa. Jaan Laaman and Tom Manning, members of the United Freedom Front, participated in actions less militant than Mandela but remain incarcerated here in the United States.

Despite the efforts of conservative and liberal politicians alike, Nelson Mandela was freed from prison in 1990. Others, like Laaman and Manning, were left to rot for being brave enough to fight against the evils of apartheid. While Obama claims to respect the legacy of Mandela (while supporting apartheid in Israel) he is allowing others who were cut from the same cloth to spend their lives behind bars.

While we can not expect Barack Obama to lift a finger to help anyone but the wealthy friends of the DNC, we can personally do something to make Jaan’s 53 year and Tom’s 80 year prison sentences easier to endure. Start by writing Jaan and Tom some letters!”

Jaan Laaman and Tom Manning are anti-imperialist revolutionaries who were active in the United Freedom Front, a clandestine anti-imperialist organization. The UFF carried out targeted bombings of corporate buildings, courthouses and military facilities as well as bank robberies to fund revolutionary projects. Both men were deeply involved in anti South African apartheid organizing.

If for some insane reason you can’t make it out, but still want to support the prisoners, you can write to them at:
Jaan Karl Laaman #10372-016

USP Tuscon

Post Office Box 24550

Tuscon, Arizona 85734

Thomas Manning #10373-016

FMC Butner

Post Office Box 1600

Butner, North Carolina 27509

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